May 4, 2019

Rachel Held Evans died Saturday. She was 37. It’s hard to overstate the influence of her generous spirit and talents on Christian culture today. As a pioneering faith blogger and then through a series of memoirs, we followed her personal journey from conservative evangelical to progressive evangelical to Episcopalian. Read more

October 5, 2015

[Sybil MacBeth, creator of the amazing book and workshop series Praying in Color, wrote this post about her friend and mentor, Phyllis Tickle, who passed away several weeks ago, as many of you already know. Phyllis was a driving force and conscience behind Paraclete Press, where I have recently become editor. While I knew Phyllis, we were only acquaintances. So I’m happy to be able to share with you the reflection of a real friend of hers. –Phil] I could... Read more

September 15, 2015

Editors’ Note: This article is part of the Patheos Public Square on the Pope in America: Implications, Collaborations, Challenges. Read other perspectives here. Pastoral, conciliatory: these are the words that keep popping up about Pope Francis. As he comes to the United States for the first time (in his life, not just since becoming pope), a lot of folks are focusing on issues. What will he say to Congress and the American people about the environment, about market capitalism? Will... Read more

April 7, 2015

Today’s daily meditation in Living Faith is one of mine. The reading is: Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?” She thought it was the gardener and said to him, “Sir, if you carried him away, tell me where you laid him, and I will take him.” Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni,” which means Teacher. — John 20:15—16 Here’s part of my reflection: Mary... Read more

March 27, 2015

The story of the resurrection of Jesus — the empty tomb; the fear and awe; Mary talking with the gardener without knowing it’s Jesus — is one of the most familiar in Christianity. You might think you know all there is to know about it; maybe you've heard the words every year since you were a kid. There's a wonderful contemplative method of reading scripture from the Ignatian tradition that helps you gain new understanding of familiar passages. You place yourself in the story and use your imagination to awaken the senses. Like lectio divina, of which it is a type, it helps you bypass the rational mind, which thinks it knows the story and what it means. Read more

December 21, 2014

As Rob and Kristen Bell’s book, "The Zimzum of Love: A New Way of Understanding Marriage", blankets the country and Rob’s new TV show premieres on Oprah’s network tonight, has Rob Bell become a self-help guru and abandoned his evangelical mission of preaching the gospel? I have been asking myself variations of this question for years, while writing in the space between spirituality and self-help. The answer is that there is no separation. Talking about how to live life fully and honestly and helpfully and robustly and ethically is talking about the gospel. And talking about faith without concern for how to live life is to some extent empty words. Read more

December 16, 2014

What a difference a few years makes. With the final Vatican report of Cardinal Law’s vendetta investigation of American women religious, this ugly episode is finally put to rest. He and Pope Benedict’s team really should have finished it before they left power if they wanted a different outcome. Now under Pope Francis, Fr. Jim Martin reports in America, … it is a document that will most likely be welcomed by many of the women religious who are heroes to... Read more

November 12, 2014

I’ve always loved Christmas. Growing up in an atheist ex-Christian household, though, the religious aspects of it were limited to: a small crèche on a side table which was never referenced or examined; a star ornament on the top of the Christmas tree; my mother’s occasional mentioning that Jesus was a Jew; and listening on the radio to the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols from King’s College, Cambridge, again without explanation. Ours was never a materialistic household, so the... Read more

October 14, 2014

At the beginning of his new book, When Saint Francis Saved The Church, Jon Sweeney warns that what is to follow will not support the "sentimental" rendering of St. Francis as a gentle animal-loving pacifist. But that's a bit of a tease. It's not that he paints a different picture; it's that he paints one much larger and more significant. St. Francis' gentle temperament, his interactions with nature, his willingness to work with enemies of the state: these are not the point. Rather, they are evidence of a much more radical one: a view of the world in which there is no Other. Read more

September 15, 2014

"Undiluted" is more a personal testimonial than a theological treatise. It follows Corey as he encounters the authentic Jesus and struggles to follow Him, learning that this means changing his worldview from the black-and-white one his fundamentalist upbringing gave him. Read more

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